FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - Cochrane, ON (November 4, 2015) – On September 2, 2015, Renee L’Heureux and Joshua Leonard, both of Timmins, ON, were convicted of three counts of animal cruelty under the Ontario SPCA Act.

• One count of permitting distress to an animal
• One count for failing to comply with standards of care- failing to provide adequate and appropriate medical attention
• One count for failing to comply with standards of care- failing to provide care necessary for general welfare


On December 15, 2014, the Ontario SPCA received a report regarding two Great Dane-type dogs, belonging to Renee L’Heureux and Joshua Leonard. The report claimed that the dogs were emaciated and in need of veterinary care.


On December 16, 2014, an Ontario SPCA Agent attended the property where they found the two Great Danes to be severely emaciated. The owners decided to surrender the two dogs to the Ontario SPCA. Other dogs on the property were also found to be in need of care and the owners were served with an Ontario SPCA Order to relieve their distress. These dogs were also subsequently surrendered to the Ontario SPCA.


Upon admission to the Timmins and District Humane Society, the two emaciated Great Danes received immediate veterinary care. The male Dane was found to be 50 per cent below his appropriate body weight and the female Dane was 30 per cent below her appropriate body weight. After being placed on a proper diet both dogs made a full recovery. They have since been adopted into loving homes.


L’Heureux and Leonard were sentenced to a 5 year limitation of one cat and one dog each, which will be required to undergo annual veterinary exams. Inspection rights for the next 5 years by the Society were also ordered; as well, the couple was placed on probation for one year. Conditions of their probation include finding homes or surrendering their remaining animals to the Ontario SPCA, paying a fine in the amount of $630 each and notifying the Ontario SPCA of any change in address.


“There is no excuse to let an animal go without proper care,” says Lynn Michaud, Senior Inspector, Ontario SPCA. “If you are having difficulty providing appropriate care, contact your Ontario SPCA Community Society to discuss what options are available.”


To report cruelty, please call 310-SPCA or email your concern to




Media Contact
Alison Cross
Director, Marketing & Communications
Ontario SPCA, Provincial Office

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Protecting animals since 1873, Ontario SPCA is Ontario's Animal Welfare organization. A registered charity comprised of over 50 communities.

Since 1919, when Ontario's first Animal Welfare legislation was proclaimed, the Ontario SPCA, with the help of its Communities, has been entrusted to maintain and enforce Animal Welfare legislation. The Act provides Ontario SPCA Agents and Inspectors with police powers to do so.

Ontario SPCA provides leadership in animal welfare innovations including introducing high-volume spay/neuter services to Ontario and opening the Provincial Education and Animal Centre.
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